Trustees To Discuss ‘Personnel Matter’ At Special Meeting Amid Franklin Contract Rumors
The Board of Trustees’ Compensation committee will discuss a “personnel matter” at an off-cycle meeting on Friday, December 6, according to a Facebook post from Trustee Barbara Doran.
The committee will hold an executive session on the matter at 3 p.m. Friday, before holding a public meeting at 3:45 p.m. that day. The public meeting will be streamed online at wpsu.org/trustees and allow for listeners to dial in at 866-657-0281.
Before this meeting was scheduled, the Board wasn’t supposed to convene until February 20.
No agenda was provided for the meeting on the Trustees’ website, and Doran’s post said Trustees would be advised on the topic before the call.
The meeting comes after two weeks of rumors about head football coach James Franklin being pursued by other programs. After a year of speculation that Franklin could leave for USC, Florida State has most recently entered the conversation as a potential suitor, according to reports. Some outlets have even published conflicting reports about whether Franklin met with Florida State last weekend.
The rumors have generated a strong push on social media among Penn State fans urging the university to extend Franklin’s contract, given his continued success over the last four seasons, going 41-11 in that span. As Franklin’s current contract stands, he is signed on until 2022 and due to make nearly $35 million. However, if he were to leave, he’d owe Penn State only $1 million in buyout money.
After Penn State’s game against Rutgers last week, Franklin carefully addressed the rumors, saying, “There is nobody that would want this not to be talked about more than me. I’m hoping this is going to be over very quickly. Like I told you, I love Penn State, I love our players, and I don’t see that changing any time soon. [Job rumors are] a little bit the nature of college football, but I love what we’re doing here. I don’t see that changing any time soon. Hopefully, all this conversation will be over very shortly.”
In years past, the Compensation committee has called special meetings to discuss pressing issues related to contract extensions. A special meeting was called on April 6, 2018, a week after Penn State basketball had won the NIT. At the Board’s previously scheduled meeting a month later, an extension was approved for head coach Pat Chambers. The year before, the committee called another special meeting to approve Franklin’s contract that extended him through 2022 after his team’s breakout conference-championship season.
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